Spartans cautious against No. 16 LIU Brooklyn

They’re from all over the country, play in New York and have a

big-city swagger. The LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds are not a typical No.

16 seed, which is why Michigan State won’t take them for

granted.

The top-seeded Spartans insist they’re not overlooking the

Northeast Conference champions as they prepare for Friday night’s

NCAA opening-round game in the West Regional. Michigan State coach

Tom Izzo called LIU ”more than a formidable foe” and was

impressed with how the school played North Carolina in last year’s

tournament.

LIU coach Jim Ferry says his team is full of ”a bunch of

tough-minded kids” who epitomize New York. Ferry says he doesn’t

see his players ”backing down from anybody.”

Spartans star Draymond Green says Michigan State’s grueling

schedule, which included non-conference games with North Carolina,

Duke and Gonzaga, prepared the team for the NCAA grind.